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Rio Tinto 2017 coal production down on previous year

Published by
World Coal,

Rio Tinto’s hard coking coal production in 2017 was 5% lower than 2016 due to the impact of Cyclone Debbie in the first quarter of 2017.

However, fourth quarter production was 6% higher than the corresponding quarter of 2016 reflecting strong operational performances at Kestrel and Hail Creek.

As announced on 1 September 2017, Rio Tinto completed the sale of Coal & Allied to Yancoal Australia for total consideration of AUS$2.69 billion, which included Coal & Allied's interests in the Hunter Valley operations, Mount Thorley and Warkworth mines. The sale, coupled with mine production sequencing changes at Hunter Valley Operations and Mount Thorley Warkworth, resulted in semi-soft coking coal and thermal coal production being lower than 2016 by 51% and 17% respectively.

Hard coking coal prices achieved in the second half of 2017 averaged AUS$164/t on an FOB basis compared to AUS$177/t in the first half of 2017. Average prices realised for thermal coal were AUS$78/t on an FOB basis in both the first half and second half of 2017.

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